Though many people believe ulcers occur from eating acidic foods or stress, most ulcers are caused by a Helicobacter pylori bacteria. Stomach or gastric ulcers are sores in the stomach’s lining. Some foods may aggravate ulcers and worsen symptoms. Though no specific diet plan exists for ulcers, your dietary habits may prevent a flare-up of stomach ulcer symptoms.
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Eat a fiber-rich diet. High-fiber foods include fresh fruits and vegetables. These foods may prevent new ulcers from forming and decrease recovery time from current ulcers. Fruits and vegetables are rich in antioxidants, which also reduce symptoms.
Consume foods containing high amounts of flavonoids, which stop the growth of H. pylori bacteria. Add apples, celery, cranberries, cranberry juice, onions and garlic to your meals.
Stop drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes if you have an ulcer. Talk with your medical professional about smoking cessation programs to quit your nicotine habit successfully.
Avoid caffeinated products such as colas and coffee if possible. You can consume small amounts of the beverages if you have just eaten. Caffeine is still present in decaffeinated tea and coffee. Chocolate contains small amounts of caffeine and should not be eaten to avoid a flare-up of symptoms. Milk chocolate has about 9 mg of caffeine and dark chocolate about 30 mg.
Do not eat spicy foods. Avoid foods flavored with meat extracts, black pepper, chili pepper, mustard seed and nutmeg. Other spicy foods may also cause discomfort.
Eat meals within 30 to 60 minutes of taking proton pump inhibitors, a type of medication commonly prescribed to treat gastric ulcers. Waiting longer than the recommended time may decrease the effectiveness of the medication.